After repacking our European vacation bags (we have a packing system: I stack / gather, Bart makes everything magically fit in the bags, always), we woke at 6:30 am to wrangle bags, strollers, kids and garbage. Our small town (and many others in Italy) has a sophisticated separation system for garbage with Organic, Paper, Glass and Plastic / Mixed as categories. We spent our time in the farmhouse separating all the trash, then were responsible for getting all but the Plastic / Mixed trash to designated dumpsters in town (Plastic / Mixed requires a key and is for residents only).
But back to the bags and kids. I literally dressed our children in their sleep, and we slipped them into the car to head to the train station in Florence and return the rental car. Thinking we’d done a good deal of “driving” in Italy, this seemed like a piece of cake. Until we got into Florence… I think Rome driving would have been much worse, but with one way streets, aggressive drivers and motorbikes everywhere, that was an adventure.
We made our train to Milan, took a taxi to Linate airport and eventually got on a plane to London after almost 2 hours of delay (one on the tarmac). Phew. Our children are very very good travelers (for children). Once we got to London, we had to navigate Heathrow airport, customs and passport control and over an hour in a taxi later made it to our hotel, starving, to be greeted by not one but two TRAINEES at the front desk. I can’t even.
By the time we made it up to the room, I was mush (in fact, we were all tired, but I was extra grumpy), since by the time we arrived in London we had traveled for 15 consecutive hours. It was 9:00 pm London time (Italy is an hour later) when we started dinner, and as we were standing outside guess what happened? Zoe lost a tooth!
Since I haven’t mentioned it, that may sound dramatic, but you may have already noticed that in some of the earlier pictures, her tooth was basically pointing at you it was so loose. But that tooth hung in there, despite many offers to pull it (I would never).
While at the Milan airport in yet another “Italian Toy Store”, we found a Playmobil Tooth Fairy action figure (can you believe that?!) So after we made sure to get pounds (coins) at the restaurant so the Tooth Fairy would be sure to show up, Zoe put the tooth in her fairy box and slipped it under her pillow.
So we had another very full travel day with 2 bags, 2 strollers, 2 kids and 4 backpacks. And by the time we arrived in London, we had just 2 more sleeps abroad. Weary world travelers!